Search News Flash: People Like Free

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Close to four percent of all search queries last week contained the word "free." Is this an indicator of a plummeting economy? Hitwise’s Bill Tancer says it’s just how people work.

In a column for Time.com, Tancer reveals insights gleaned from collecting the top 10,000 search queries containing the word "free."

 Don’t worry, he doesn’t list all of them there. He does, though, if you like learning the origin of phrases, go into where the phrase "There’s no such thing as a free lunch" comes from.

The most popular of the free queries were searches for free games, music, and ringtones. Well, that’s the family friendly version.

The Skinemax version is that most of time, freeloaders are looking for sex, sex stories, sex videos, and sex pics. These may also want to do a search on "free virus protection," while they’re at it.

If memory serves, though, free ringtones, games and wallpaper are dangerous queries, too.

As you might expect, free shipping is most popular around the holidays, and free games, chat and movies are more in demand during the lazy summers.

Here are a couple of other idiomatic origins, just for good measure:

You can’t have your cake and eat it too

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

Search News Flash: People Like Free
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